Monday, June 11, 2012

"Why isn't everybody mediocre like me?!"

I hate whiney liberals.

Scratch that - I hate whiney people, period.

And Yahoo! TV's Claudine Zap is currently at the top of the list.  In one of the latest click-topping hits on the Yahoo news bar, Zap covers/comments on the fact that conservative pundit Glenn Beck apparently just struck a deal doubling his radio show salary.  Apparently, this news isn't comforting to Zap who finds Beck's raise ironic, "...especially considering that the conservative pundit isn’t even No. 1 in his morning timeslot."  Apparently, he's only THIRD. 

Pardon me while I scoff at the idea that the Bronze medalist in talk radio might qualify for a raise, even if it is less than the deal Gold medalist Rush Limbaugh inked four years prior.

And if you still don't get the injustice behind Beck's deal (oh, which, by the way, includes his digital businesses and related advertising - something the old deal didn't, but, whatever) think of it this way: "Most Americans, however, are not getting a Beck-sized salary bump. A survey by Adecco showed only a third of Americans received a raise last year."

That's right: Not everyone in America got a raise.  But, Beck did.

(In a related sidenote, I wonder if Ms. Zap knows that not everyone in America got to leave work early to play golf this year.  But, Barack Obama did.)

Zap goes on to compare Beck's 100% raise to the Ford Motor Company's average raise of 2.7% of an employee's base salary, neglecting to mention certain facts like:

a. The Ford Motor Company has to abide by a Union contract with that "average worker" that grants them overtime pay for work done outside of their contractual shift.  Said contract also provides payment for health benefits, paid time off, and other perks like signing bonuses and profit sharing checks.  (Those who are self-employed, like Beck, have no such guarantees with any deal they sign, choosing instead to pay for their own benefits, time off, and retirement investments themselves - a pay structure so commonplace in the entertainment industry that you'd think Ms. Zap would have easily taken that into account.)

b.  The "average worker" at The Ford Motor Company doesn't need to shell out hundreds of thousands of dollars annually to maintain a security detail for themselves and their family because they constantly receive death threats for voicing their opinions publicly.

To give her critical knife a twist, Zap concludes her scintillating coverage by observing that Beck knows how to "hustle his brand" and "use his [radio] show to shill for his other products," like his books and website which, "the Wall Street Journal estimates revenue from those side businesses will bring in $40 million this year."

Speaking of media personalities who use one public platform to advertise their other products, Ms. Zap also covers the Kardashians on her Yahoo!TV blog.  She neglects, however, to mention exactly how much money they throw around per episode.  Some people can just get away with everything in this world, I guess.

Some people, like average online "news" bloggers, who unwittingly praise celebrity waste on one hand while criticizing conservative successes on the other.  What's more, they turn these celebrity wasteoids into demigods to be worshipped while condemning conservative stars (celebrities in their own right) for achieving financial success by using "logic" best exemplified by arguments seen on reality TV.  "Beck's getting more money than an auto worker!!"  Seriously?  Who are you going to compare Kim Kardashian to, then?  A maid at the Plaza Hotel?

Leftists travel in packs of double standards which is why they come off like those annoying kids in school who spent their time sucking up to the cool clique while feeling free to tell the nerds what to do.  In the end, they're just a bunch of whiners, always looking towards others to define what they themselves lack and, in turn, criticizing the successful folks for managing to do just fine on their own.

Beck got a raise because Beck, regardless of his political opinions, is good at business - a quality that Zap, as a media writer with nothing much but Yahoo behind her name, probably lacks but desperately needs.  But, the cool kids on the block don't like Beck, so Zap's going to admire Kim Kardashian instead.  Gee, I wonder what Zap and her readers can learn from a girl like Kim.

I'm not quite sure, but I hope Zap has a good collection of butt firming sneakers at home.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Love Labor Lost

One could legitimately argue that Bill Clinton (the Liberal) sounded the death knell for American Labor with NAFTA.

While large labor unions like the AFL-CIO protested the North American Free Trade Agreement, they continued to endorse the same Democrats who created and voted to enact the US job-killing legislation: Clinton, Gore, Kerry, etc.  The irony continued into the Obama Administration with AFL-CIO's President Richard Trumka issuing a statement against the proposed "NAFTA-Style" US-Korea Trade Deal, accusing the deal of being the latest in a long line of government trade deals that "sap economic growth and domestic job creation."  Yet, the union's endorsement of Obama remains as strong as ever.

Perhaps the hypocrisy of these unions - that continue to endorse candidates who propose job-killing legislation - is the source of their own demise.  A Harris Poll conducted in 1994, right as the dust was settling in the ugly NAFTA battle, indicated that "nearly half (44%) of members of union families rate the labor unions negatively."  And this was after the unions lost their battle against NAFTA.

Why would union members rate their labor orgs so negatively after these orgs had gone to battle against the most anti-worker legislation in modern American history?

The poll goes on to cite that "...substantial majorities criticize [Unions] for being too involved in politics (70%), being more concerned fighting change than bringing it about (65%), and stifiling individual intitative (59%)."  54% criticized unions for "not giving them their money's worth" and "not working for legislation that would help all working people."

The bottom line: Workers weren't getting enough bang for their buck.  In fact, workers felt that the unions harmed, not helped their careers.  So, when push came to shove, they chose to back Clinton in the battle.  After all, he was the guy the unions told them to vote for in the first place.

The Harris Poll ended with a suggestion: Unions needed "new leadership, fresh thinking and new strategies."  If a hypocritical attitude isn't enough, unions desperately suffer from a complete cultural disconnect, clearly evidenced by their need to defend themselves on long-dead battles fought at the dawn of the 20th century.  (In case you hadn't heard, now it's the 21st.)  Yes, the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire was horrible ...which is why we now have workplace safety regulations.  Yes, our ancestors used to work 20 hour days... which is why we now have anti-sweatshop labor laws.  Do you ever get the feeling that it is time to give labor unions a gold watch, a pat on the back, and a room in a retirement home?

Labor unions fight the Marxist fight to standardize humanity, totally ignorant of the fact that they're "stifiling individual initiative" in the process.  In other words, while people may need people, they don't want to be like other people.  Socialism has continued to fail in America because, unlike Europe, once we've achieved our goal as a collective we're happy to go our separate ways. 

Labor's larger ideological failure can be summed up using one great American axiom: We aren't out to re-shape the nation because, well, if something isn't broken, why fix it?  The great notion that we can be socially engineered into perfection can only be upheld so long as those touting that notion are perfect in and of themselves.  When all you can manage to be is a hypocrite out to stifle individual freedoms, you've become the political equivalent of a modern-day televangelist.  No wonder common liberals are often referred to as "Kool Aid Drinkers" - you'd need to be drugged to bow to that kind of taskmaster.

Walker won the recall in Wisconsin because he enacted legislation that gave union employees the freedoms the union had taken away.  The proof is in the pudding: If the union had been worth a damn, they'd have retained their membership and Walker would have been out the door.  Labor has lost the fight in America, but it isn't because of government, or big business, or any other faceless, nameless target on the union bar's dart board.  Labor has failed because Labor is an ideology that tells the individual, "You aren't good enough."

And, as any capitalist can tell you, that's not a good slogan for business.